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The NBER Reporter 2019 Number 4 Conferences


Tax Policy and the Economy
Economics of Artificial Intelligence
Taxation of Business Income
Cities, Labor Markets, and the Global Economy Conference
Health, Wellbeing, and Children’s Outcomes for Native Americans and Other Indigenous Peoples

Macroeconomic Perspectives on the Value of Health
Labor Demand and Older Workers
Economics of Infrastructure Investment
Innovation Information Initiative
India in the Global Economy

Tax Policy and the Economy

An NBER conference on Tax Policy and the Economy took place in Washington, DC, September 26. Research Associate Robert A. Moffitt of Johns Hopkins University organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Harry and Lynde Bradley Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Jonathan Meer, Texas A&M University and NBER, and Benjamin Priday, Texas A&M University, "The Impact of Income, Wealth, and Tax Policy on Charitable Giving"

    Katherine Baicker, University of Chicago and NBER; Mark Shepard, Harvard University and NBER; and Jonathan S. Skinner, Dartmouth College and NBER, "One Medicare for All? The Economics of a Uniform Health Insurance Program" (NBER Working Paper 24037)

    Casey B. Mulligan, University of Chicago and NBER, "The Employer Penalty, Voluntary Compliance, and the Size Distribution of Firms: Evidence from a Survey of Small Businesses"

    Robert J. Barro, Harvard University and NBER, and Brian Wheaton, Harvard University, "Taxes, Incorporation, and Productivity" (NBER Working Paper 25508)

    John Beshears and David Laibson, Harvard University and NBER; James J. Choi, Yale University and NBER; Mark Iwry, The Brookings Institution; David C. John, AARP Public Policy Institute; and Brigitte C. Madrian, Brigham Young University and NBER, "Building Emergency Savings Through Employer-Sponsored Rainy Day Savings Accounts"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/TPE19/summary.html

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Economics of Artificial Intelligence

An NBER conference on Economics of Artificial Intelligence took place in Toronto September 26–27. Research Associates Ajay K. Agrawal, Joshua S. Gans, and Avi Goldfarb, all of the University of Toronto, and Catherine Tucker of MIT organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Creative Destruction Lab. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Julian Tszkin Chan, Bates White Economic Consulting, and Weifeng Zhong, Mercatus Center at George Mason University, "Reading China: Predicting Policy Change with Machine Learning"

    Joel M. Klinger, Juan C. Mateos-Garcia, and Konstantinos M. Stathoulopoulos, Nesta, "Deep Learning, Deep Change? Mapping the Development of the Artificial Intelligence General Purpose Technology"

    David Autor, MIT and NBER, and Anna M. Salomons, Utrecht University, "New Frontiers: The Evolving Content and Geography of New Work in the 20th Century"

    James Bessen, Boston University; Maarten Goos, London School of Economics; Anna M. Salomons; and Wiljan van den Berge, CPB Netherlands Bureau for Economic Policy Analysis, "Automatic Reaction — What Happens to Workers at Firms that Automate?"

    Mathieu Aubry, École des Ponts ParisTech; Roman Kräussl, University of Luxembourg; Gustavo Manso, University of California, Berkeley; and Christophe Spaenjers, HEC Paris, "Machines and Masterpieces: Predicting Prices in the Art Auction Market"

    Ajay K. Agrawal; John McHale, National University of Ireland; and Alexander Oettl, Georgia Institute of Technology and NBER, "A Model of AI-Aided Scientific Discovery and Innovation"

    Daniel Rock, MIT, "Engineering Value: The Returns to Technological Talent and Investments in Artificial Intelligence"

    Daniel Bjorkegren, Brown University, and Joshua Blumenstock, University of California, Berkeley, "Manipulation-Proof Machine Learning"

    Mariano-Florentino Cuéllar, California Supreme Court and Stanford University; Benjamin Larsen, Copenhagen Business School; and Yong Suk Lee and Michael Webb, Stanford University, "Impact of Artificial Intelligence Regulation on Artificial Intelligence Adoption and Innovation"

    Ansgar Walther and Tarun Ramadorai, Imperial College London; Paul Goldsmith-Pinkham, Yale University; and Andreas Fuster, Swiss National Bank, "Predictably Unequal? The Effect of Machine Learning on Credit Markets"

    Seth G. Benzell, Boston University; Laurence J. Kotlikoff, Boston University and NBER; Guillermo LaGarda, Inter-American Development Bank; and Jeffrey D. Sachs, Columbia University and NBER, "Robots Are Us: Some Economics of Human Replacement"

    Matthew Jackson, Stanford University, and Zafer Kanik, MIT, "How Automation that Substitutes for Labor Affects Production Networks, Growth, and Income Inequality"

    Marcus Dillender, University of Illinois at Chicago, and Eliza Forsythe, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, "Computerization of White Collar Jobs"

    Edward L. Glaeser and Michael Luca, Harvard University and NBER, and Andrew Hillis, Hyunjin Kim, and Scott Duke Kominers, Harvard University, "How Does Compliance Affect the Returns to Algorithms? Evidence from Boston's Restaurant Inspectors"

    Jill Grennan, Duke University, and Roni Michaely, Cornell Tech, "Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Work: Evidence from Analysts"

    Gillian Hadfield, University of Toronto, and Jack A. Clark, Import AI, "Regulatory Markets for AI Safety"

    Bo Cowgill and Fabrizio Dell'Acqua, Columbia University, "Biased Programmers? Or Biased Data? A Field Experiment about Algorithmic Bias"

    Prasanna Tambe and Lorin Hitt, University of Pennsylvania; Erik Brynjolfsson, MIT and NBER; and Daniel Rock, MIT, "AI and Intangible Capital"

    Susan Athey, Stanford University and NBER, "The Value of Data for Personalization in Retail"

    Adair Morse, University of California, Berkeley and NBER, and Robert P. Bartlett III, Richard Stanton, and Nancy Wallace, University of California, Berkeley, "Consumer Lending Discrimination in the Era of FinTech"

    Benjamin R. Handel and Jonathan T. Kolstad, University of California, Berkeley and NBER; and Jonathan Gruber, MIT and NBER, "Managing Intelligence: Skilled Experts and AI in Markets for Complex Products"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/AIf19/summary.html

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Taxation of Business Income

An NBER conference on Taxation of Business Income took place in Cambridge on October 2–3. Research Associates Joshua Rauh of Stanford University and Owen M. Zidar of Princeton University organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Sebastian Bustos, Harvard University; Dina Pomeranz, University of Zurich; Juan Carlos Suárez Serrato, Duke University and NBER; José Vila-Belda, University of Zurich, and Gabriel Zucman, University of California, Berkeley and NBER, "Monitoring Tax Compliance by Multinationals: Evidence from a Natural Experiment in Chile"

    Sabrina T. Howell, New York University and NBER, and Filippo Mezzanotti, Northwestern University, "Financing Entrepreneurship through the Tax Code: Angel Investor Tax Credits"

    Jennifer Blouin, University of Pennsylvania, and Leslie Robinson, Dartmouth College, "Double Trouble: How Much of US Multinationals' Profits Are Really in Tax Havens?"

    Scott R. Baker, Northwestern University and NBER; Stephen Teng Sun, Peking University; and Constantine Yannelis, University of Chicago and NBER, "Corporate Taxes and Retail Prices"

    Audrey Guo, Santa Clara University, "The Effects of Unemployment Insurance Taxation on Multi-Establishment Firms"

    Chatib Basri, University of Indonesia; Mayara Felix, MIT; Rema Hanna, Harvard University and NBER; and Benjamin A. Olken, MIT and NBER, "Tax Administration vs. Tax Rates: Evidence from Corporate Taxation in Indonesia"(NBER Working Paper 26150)

    Cailin R. Slattery, Columbia University, "Bidding for Firms: Subsidy Competition in the US"

    Max Risch, University of Michigan, "Does Taxing Business Owners Affect Their Employees? Evidence from a Change in the Top Marginal Tax Rate"

    Christine L. Dobridge, Federal Reserve Board; and Paul Landefeld and Jake Mortenson, Joint Committee on Taxation, "Corporate Taxes and the Wage Distribution: Effects of the Domestic Production Activities Deduction"

    Enrico Moretti, University of California, Berkeley and NBER, and Daniel Wilson, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, "Taxing Billionaires: Estate Taxes and the Geographical Location of the Forbes 400"

    Lucas Goodman, Katherine Lim, and Andrew Whitten, US Department of the Treasury, and Bruce Sacerdote, Dartmouth College and NBER, "Impacts of the 199A Deduction for Pass-through Owners"

    Cailin R. Slattery and Owen M. Zidar, "Evaluating State and Local Business Tax Incentives"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/TBIf19/summary.html

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Cities, Labor Markets, and the Global Economy Conference

An NBER conference on Cities, Labor Markets, and the Global Economy took place in Cambridge on October 25–26. Research Associates Edward L. Glaeser of Harvard University and Stephen J. Redding of Princeton University organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Eran Hoffmann, Hebrew University, and Monika Piazzesi and Martin Schneider, Stanford University and NBER, "Jobs at Risk, Regional Growth, and Labor Market Flows"

    Jan Eeckhout, University College London; Christoph Hedtrich, Universitat Pompeu Fabra; and Roberto Pinheiro, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, "Technology, Spatial Sorting, and Job Polarization"

    Sharat Ganapati, Georgetown University; Woan Foong Wong, University of Oregon; and Oren Ziv, Michigan State University, "Entrepot"

    Cecile Gaubert, Patrick M. Kline, and Danny Yagan, University of California, Berkeley and NBER, "Place-Based Redistribution"

    Esteban Rossi-Hansberg, Princeton University and NBER; and Pierre-Daniel Sarte and Felipe Schwartzman, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond, "Cognitive Hubs and Spatial Redistribution" (NBER Working Paper 26267)

    Fabian Eckert, Princeton University, "Growing Apart: Tradable Services and the Fragmentation of the US Economy"

    Nicholas Bloom, Stanford University and NBER; Kyle Handley, University of Michigan and NBER; André Kurmann, Drexel University; and Philip A. Luck, University of Colorado Denver, "The Impact of Chinese Trade on US Employment: The Good, The Bad, and The Debatable"

    Gabriel Kreindler, Harvard University, and Yuhei Miyauchi, Boston University, "Measuring Commuting and Economic Activity inside Cities with Cell Phone Records"

    Costas Arkolakis, Yale University and NBER; Rodrigo Adão, University of Chicago and NBER; and Federico Esposito, Tufts University, "General Equilibrium Indirect Effects in Space: Theory and Measurement"

    Victor Couture, University of California, Berkeley; Cecile Gaubert, University of California, Berkeley and NBER; Jessie Handbury, University of Pennsylvania and NBER; and Erik Hurst, University of Chicago and NBER, "Income Growth and the Distributional Effects of Urban Spatial Sorting" (NBER Working Paper 26142)

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/CLMf19/summary.html

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Health, Wellbeing, and Children's Outcomes for
Native Americans and Other Indigenous Peoples

An NBER conference on Health, Wellbeing, and Children's Outcomes for Native Americans and Other Indigenous Peoples took place November 1 in Cambridge. Research Associate Randall Akee of the University of California, Los Angeles and Faculty Research Fellow Emilia Simeonova of Johns Hopkins University organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the National Institute on Aging through the NBER Center for Aging and Health Research. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Richard H. Steckel, Ohio State University and NBER, and Kris Inwood, University of Guelph, "Changes in the Well-Being of Native Americans Born in the Northwest, 1830–1900"

    Stefanie Schurer, University of Sydney; Mary Alice Doyle, Poverty Action; and Sven Silburn, Menzies School of Health Research, "Why did Australia's Major Welfare Reform Lead to Worse Birth Outcomes in Aboriginal Communities?"

    Donna Feir, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, and Maggie Jones and David Scoones, University of Victoria, "The Legacy of Indian Missions in the United States"

    Maggie Jones, "Student Aid and the Distribution of Educational Attainment"

    Brooks A. Kaiser, University of Southern Denmark, "Growth, Transition, and Decline in Resource Based Socio-Ecological Systems"

    Dustin Frye, Vassar College, and Christian Dippel, University of California, Los Angeles and NBER, "The Effect of Land Allotment on Native American Households during the Assimilation Era"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/IPf19/summary.html

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Macroeconomic Perspectives on the Value of Health

An NBER conference on Macroeconomic Perspectives on the Value of Health took place November 8 in Cambridge. Research Associate Chad Syverson of the University of Chicago organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    David M. Cutler, Harvard University and NBER, "A Satellite Account for Health in the United States"

    Adriana Lleras-Muney, University of California, Los Angeles and NBER, and Flavien E. Moreau, University of California, Los Angeles, "A Unified Law of Mortality for Economic Analysis"

    Seidu Dauda, World Bank Group; Abe Dunn, Bureau of Economic Analysis; and Anne E. Hall, Department of the Treasury, "Are Medical Prices Still Declining? A Systematic Examination of Quality-Adjusted Price Index Alternatives for Medical Care"

    Mary O'Mahony and Lea Samek, King's College London, "Health and Human Capital"

    Anne E. Hall, "Declines in Health and Widening Socioeconomic Inequalities among the Working-Age Population and Their Implications for Work-related Disability: Evidence from the National Health Interview Survey 1997–2018"

    Colleen Carey, Cornell University and NBER, and David Molitor and Nolan H. Miller, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and NBER, "Why Does Disability Insurance Enrollment Increase during Recessions? Evidence from Medicare"

    Charles I. Jones and Peter J. Klenow, Stanford University and NBER, "The Economic Well-Being of the US Population, 1970–Present"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/MPHf19/summary.html

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Labor Demand and Older Workers

An NBER conference on Labor Demand and Older Workers took place November 15 in Cambridge. Research Associate Kevin S. Milligan of the University of British Columbia organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Johanna Catherine Maclean, Temple University and NBER; Stefan Pichler, ETH Zurich; and Nicolas R. Ziebarth, Cornell University, "Mandated Sick Pay: Coverage, Utilization, and Welfare Effects"

    Joseph Marchand, University of Alberta, and Kevin S. Milligan, "Natural Resource Booms and Older Workers"

    Marco Angrisani and Erik Meijer, University of Southern California, and Arie Kapteyn, University of Southern California and NBER, "Sorting into Jobs and Labor Supply and Demand at Older Ages"

    Daron Acemoglu, MIT and NBER, and Pascual Restrepo, Boston University, "Demographics and Automation" (NBER Working Paper 24421)

    Simon Jäger, MIT and NBER, and Benjamin Schoefer, University of California, Berkeley, "Wages and the Value of Nonemployment" (NBER Working Paper 25230)

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/LDOWf19/summary.html

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Economics of Infrastructure Investment

An NBER conference on Economics of Infrastructure Investment took place November 15–16 in Cambridge. Research Associates Edward L. Glaeser of Harvard University and James M. Poterba of MIT organized the meeting, which was sponsored by the Smith Richardson Foundation. These researchers' papers were presented and discussed:

    Leah Brooks, George Washington University, and Zachary Liscow, Yale University, "Is Infrastructure Spending Like Other Spending?"

    Matthew Turner, Brown University and NBER, and Geetika Nagpal, Brown University, "Transportation Infrastructure in the US"

    Jennifer Bennett, Robert Kornfeld, and David Wasshausen, Bureau of Economic Analysis, and Daniel E. Sichel, Wellesley College and NBER, "Measuring Infrastructure in BEA's National Economic Accounts"

    Shane Greenstein, Harvard University and NBER, "Digital Infrastructure"

    Valerie A. Ramey, University of California, San Diego and NBER, "Macroeconomic Consequences of Infrastructure Investment"

    Dejan Makovsek, International Transport Forum at the OECD, and Adrian Bridge, Queensland University of Technology, "Procurement Practices and Infrastructure Costs"

    Eduardo Engel and Ronald Fischer, Universidad de Chile, and Alexander Galetovic, Adolfo Ibáñez University, "International Experience with Public-Private Partnerships in Infrastructure"

    Deborah J. Lucas, MIT and NBER, and Jorge Alberto Jimenez Montesinos, MIT, "A Fair Value Approach to Valuing Public Infrastructure Projects and the Risk Transfer in Public Private Partnerships"

Summaries of these papers are at www.nber.org/conferences/2019/EIf19/summary.html

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Innovation Information Initiative

The NBER's Innovation Information Initiative convened December 6–7 in Cambridge. Research Associates Adam B. Jaffe of Brandeis University, Bronwyn H. Hall of University of California, Berkeley, and Bhaven N. Sampat of Columbia University were joined by Osmat Azzam Jefferson of Queensland University of Technology, Samuel J. Klein of MIT, and Matt Marx of Boston University in organizing the meeting, which was sponsored by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. The following researchers made presentations about existing or prospective data-creation projects and opportunities:

    Gaétan de Rassenfosse, Ecole polytechnique federale de Lausanne (EPFL), "Linking Products to Patents"

    Jeffrey M. Kuhn, University of North Carolina, "Applications of Textual Similarity to Measure Construction and Evaluation"

    Deyun Yin, World Intellectual Property Organization, "Challenges and Solutions in the Construction of Chinese Patent Database"

    Ashish Arora and Sharon Belenzon, Duke University and NBER, and Lia Sheer, Duke University, "The Role of Company Names and Ownership Changes in the Dynamic Reassignments of Patents"

    Osmat Azzam Jefferson, Queensland University of Technology, "Lenslab and the Lens public API"

    Matt Marx, Boston University, "Toward a Complete Set of Patent References to Science"

    Lisa D. Cook, Michigan State University and NBER, "Race, Ethnicity, and Patenting: USPTO's New Data Collection Effort"

    Samuel J. Klein, "Prior Art"

    Mitsuru Igami, Yale University, "Mapping Firms' Locations in Technological Space"

    Dominique Guellec, Observatoire des Sciences et Techniques, "Novelty and Impact"

    Martina Iori, Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, "The Complexity of Knowledge"

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India in the Global Economy

The NBER, along with the Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) and the National Council for Applied Economic Research (NCAER), two research organizations based in New Delhi, India, sponsored a meeting in New Delhi and Neemrana, India, December 13–15. The meeting, which focused on "India in the Global Economy," was the 21st gathering in this series of research exchanges.The meeting included NBER researchers as well as economists from Indian universities, research institutions, and government departments. NBER Research Associate Abhijit Banerjee of MIT organized the conference jointly with Rajat Kathuria of ICRIER. The meeting included remarks on current policy developments from Nirmala Sitharaman, the Honorable Union Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs for India.

The NBER participants were: Neeraj Kaushal, Columbia University; Edward Glaeser and Rema Hanna, Harvard University; Anne Krueger and John Lipsky, Johns Hopkins University; Parag Pathak and James Poterba, MIT; Stephen Redding, Princeton University; Alan Auerbach, University of California, Berkeley; Kathleen McGarry, University of California, Los Angeles; Karthik Muralidharan, University of California, San Diego; Marianne Bertrand and Raghuram Rajan, University of Chicago; Charles Engel, University of Wisconsin; and Michael Peters, Yale University. Each delivered a research presentation and participated in discussion with Indian counterparts in related fields. Topics discussed included the economics of fiscal policy and tax design; urbanization; global economic growth and trade; the effects of aging populations on health status and economic performance; education, skills, and human capital acquisition; the challenge of job creation; and inequality and economic mobility.

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